Australia vs South Africa, 2nd ODI, Preview: Messed up hosts face yet another stern Proteas test

Shaun Marsh is fit and available for the selection.

Faf du Plessis
Faf du Plessis. (Photo by Daniel Kalisz/Getty Images)

Aaron Finch’s first ODI as the full-time Australia skipper didn’t go well as they were thrashed by South Africa in Perth. To be honest, Australia are in a complete disarray at the moment and are in desperate need of an inspiration from somewhere. They face a must-win situation now in the three-match series as the action shifts to the Adelaide Oval.

The visitors, on the other hand, will be confident enough to go past the Men in Yellow after a clinical show in the series opener. This is their best chance to seal the series in order to try benched players in the dead rubber on Sunday. Faf du Plessis knows the importance of a series victory over Australia and he wouldn’t want to leave it until the last game.

While the Proteas bowlers were breathing fire a WACA like pitch at the Perth Stadium, the much-famed Aussie pacers looked completely out of ideas and couldn’t eke out anything from the wicket. Only Marcus Stoinis managed to pick three wickets and looked a little threatening.

Team Combinations

Australia

Aaron Finch has already hinted at the changes in the line-up and Shaun Marsh is the most likely candidate to be included at the top of the order. He might replace D’Arcy Short in that case while a spinner in Adam Zampa will also play it seems. This will force the Aussies to break their all-pace attack and Josh Hazlewood will have to sit out after having an ordinary outing in Perth.

Having said that, the batting needs to click at any cost which has struggled for a long time now and the return of in-form Marsh will certainly bolster the confidence.

Probable XI: Travis Head, Aaron Finch (c), Shaun Marsh/D’Arcy Short, Chris Lynn, Glenn Maxwell, Alex Carey (wk), Marcus Stoinis, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood/Adam Zampa.

South Africa

South Africa have no reason to change their combination. Reeza Hendricks opened in the last game and did well which must encourage him to continue doing the same. Markram also looked comfortable batting at three while the likes Heinrich Klaasen and David Miller would hope for some time out in the middle. Andile Phehlukwayo’s performance in the series opener will make Chris Morris and Dwaine Pretorius wait for more time for the opportunity to come.

The perfect pace attack of Dale Steyn, Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi gave nightmares to the home side and the same will be expected of them again. Tahir hasn’t done anything wrong to be dropped as well.

Probable XI: Quinton de Kock (wk), Reeza Hendricks, Aiden Markram, Faf du Plessis, Heinrich Klaasen, David Miller, Andile Phehlukwayo, Dale Steyn, Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi, Imran Tahir.

Focus will be on

Chris Lynn (Australia)

Chris Lynn’s return to the Australia colours has not turned out to be auspicious by any stretch of imagination. He struggled miserably in the UAE in the T20Is and during his 32-ball painful stay in the middle. One would also feel if he is comfortable playing in the middle-order having batted at the top of the order mostly. In any case, Lynn’s chances are running out fast to seal the World Cup spot as the likes of Steve Smith and David Warner are likely to return to the side once their bans end.

Reeza Hendricks (South Africa)

Reeza Hendricks played a delightful knock on his debut against Sri Lanka but then faded away considerably in the following matches. But the move to promote him as an opener paid dividends in the last match. Though he would be gutted to have missed out on a well-deserved half-century. This time around, the talented batsman will be keen on batting long.

Head to Head

Matches: 97 | Australia won: 47 | South Africa won: 46 | Tie/NR – 4

Stat Attack

7 – Australia have lost their last seven ODIs so far.

Broadcast Details

TV – Sony ESPN

Live Streaming – Sony LIV

Match Timings – 8:50 IST; 11:20 Local

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